Summary: Examine the high calling of being a servant of Jesus Christ.
What is the greatest business in the world? You have probably heard some variation of the story of the three boys who were comparing notes concerning their fathers. One boy (who’s father was a poet)said "My father can write a few words on a paper and get $10,000 for his work." Another boy (who’s father was a musician said "My father can write a song on a piece of paper and get $20,000 for it." A third boy, (who’s father was a preacher)was not to be outdone. He said "My father can preach a sermon and it takes 8 men to collect the money." They were proud of their fathers and their respective business. What is the greatest business?
In Acts 6 we find a group of men who were assigned, what I consider to be, "the greatest business in the world." The occasion was the selection of the seven (who many believe to be the first deacons). In this passage the disciples instruct the church leaders to select"seven men of good reputation, full of the Holy Spirit and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business.(vs. 3)" The business was serving those in need. Jesus business is the greatest business in the world. In this passage we learn several valuable lessons about service.
1. The first lesson we learn is the Motivation to Service.
• The concept of being a servant carries certain negative connotations. One connotation comes from the word itself. The dictionary definition of a servant is “a person employed to perform services, especially, household duties, for another."
From this we picture such people as Alice on the Brady Bunch; Jeffrey on the Fresh Prince of Belair; or Hopsing on Bonanza. These pictures gives us negative mental images of a servant.
• In Acts 6 we find a group of people who had a new found faith in Jesus Christ. Such faith changes a person’s perspective. A good example is the apostle Paul. Until the occasion when he met Jesus he had nothing but hostility and bitterness toward Christians. However, after accepting Christ he was given a new perspective. He wanted to serve people and share Jesus.
2. A second lesson we learn is the privilege of service. The seven were honored by the privilege of serving other people.
• There is no higher calling. Even politicians acknowledge this privilege. Elizabeth Dole once said
“Life is not just a few years to spend on self-indulgence and career advancement. It is a privilege, a responsibility and a stewardship to be lived according to a much higher calling."
Jesus said "he who is greatest among you shall be your servant.”
Paul was proud to be "a servant of Jesus Christ.” In a number of his books he begins with that boast.
3. The third lesson we learn from Acts 6 is the importance of service.
• The church needs servants. As you study the context of Acts you discover that the unity and growth of the church was dependent upon individuals who had a servant heart. You might say service was the glue that held the church together.
• The church needs servants but the world also needs servants. When we serve, the people of our world will be reached for Jesus Christ.
Illustration- I had the privilege of mowing the yard of a couple who had several significant needs. She was pregnant and her husband was in jail. That act of service opened the door that I might share my faith with these people. They needed the service but Jesus needed a soul. There is no greater business!